Thursday, April 27, 2017

treasures

I have an interesting question for you to consider:

Which would be the easiest item to give up...

The Bible or your television?
The Bible or your computer?
The Bible or your cell phone?
The Bible or your bank account?

Wow, this was a hard one for me because it pinned me down to really think about what I cling to and value the most. Do I clutch on to the material or the eternal?

Admittedly, God's Word is not always the first thing I would instinctively choose over some of the things of this world... or even over my spouse and family. It is a constant discipline to remain focused on His authority and direction first... to treasure Him first... to yield to His way first.

Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:19-20, "Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal."

Friends, I encourage you to stop and pray with me on this matter. I urge you to ask God to keep His Word the #1 priority of your life... the treasure that you cling to. He is worth it! His truth is more precious and more valuable than anything! And praise Him - His Word is eternal, unchanging, absolute, and enough! Hallelujah to the King!!!

Blessings!

XOX!

~Victoria

© The Devoted Woman | Victoria Anderson

Thursday, April 20, 2017

in all your ways

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.
(Proverbs 3:5-6, ESV)

Trust in the Lord...
Trust Him, with ALL your heart.
Trust Him, and do not lean on your own understanding.
Trust Him, and in all your ways acknowledge Him...

IN ALL YOUR WAYS ACKNOWLEDGE HIM...
Submit to Him.
Honor Him.
Be thankful for Him.
Believe in the reliability, the truth, the ability, and the strength of Him.

I've been thinking about these words a lot lately.
How difficult it is for me to surrender the idea of leaning upon my own understanding.
To prevent myself from defaulting into my own selfish way of thinking... MY way, if you will!

But, MY way is simply not the place I should rest assured or feel definitive.
MY way is not really secure or in control.
No... truth be told, MY way is not something to be trusted.
It gets me into trouble.
It leads me into stress.
It causes me confusion, sorrow, restlessness, anger.
In fact, MY way is the farthest place my heart should seek rest.
MY way is the most ridiculous place to put trust.

The world says, "Trust your gut.  Trust your instincts.  Trust your inner, authentic self.  Trust your dreams."  But later in the book of Proverbs, I read, "He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool: but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered."  (Proverbs 28:26, KJV)  

But how weird and contradictory does that seem?
I trust me more than anyone, right?
I know me.
I've learned from my own personal experience.
I perceive.  I study.  I make decisions with what I know to be a sound mind.
But is that actually wise or good for me?
Am I walking in real wisdom when I go at it alone?

God says, "No... Don't do it.  Don't trust yourself. Don't loose sight of my glory.  Don't stray away from my perfect truth.  Rather, acknowledge me in everything.  Obey my Word and know my promises.  Look for me everywhere.  Abide in my grace and give me the task of taking on your well-being.  Really, I've got this!  Believe in me and only ME!"

Yes, only in His Way is there wisdom.
Only with Him as my focus, can I have a beneficial direction... a proven path.. a meaningful purpose... a blessed hope.

Reading on further in Proverbs 3, I am instructed, "Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil.  This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.  (Proverbs 3:7-8, KJV)

Clearly, I need to remember that wisdom is not naturally mine.  It is something found only in the diligence of seeking after God's law.  Because of this, I am told to live my life pursuing righteousness while loving and uplifting others to do the same in Jesus' Name.  (See 2 Timothy 2.)

Why acknowledge God?
Why trust Him with all our heart?
Why give up our rationale and what we think may be right vs. submitting to what He commands to be holy?

Because He is able.
Because He has a plan in hand and is ready to see us through to completion.
Because He is good.
Because He is wise.
Because He loves us most.
Because HE IS GOD and well, we are not.

With this in mind, today I encourage everyone reading this little blog to stop and read all of Proverbs Chapter 3.  And as you invest in receiving God's Word, consider the importance of trusting and seeking after His healthy wisdom.  Stop and look around at all the ways there are to acknowledge His glory in your life while loving others in His Name.  Surrender your understanding and logic over to His care.  Abide in His grace.  Why?  Because God's Way is the only reliable path to cling to.  God's Way insures and promises peace, health, favor, refreshment.

Thank you, Lord.

Proverbs 3

My son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments, for length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you. Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart.  So you will find favor and good success in the sight of God and man.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord, and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones.

Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine.

My son, do not despise the Lord's discipline or be weary of his reproof, for the Lord reproves him whom he loves, as a father the son in whom he delights.

Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding, for the gain from her is better than gain from silver and her profit better than gold. She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you desire can compare with her. Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her; those who hold her fast are called blessed.

The Lord by wisdom founded the earth; by understanding he established the heavens; by his knowledge the deeps broke open, and the clouds drop down the dew.

My son, do not lose sight of these—keep sound wisdom and discretion, and they will be life for your soul and adornment for your neck. Then you will walk on your way securely, and your foot will not stumble. If you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.

Do not be afraid of sudden terror or of the ruin of the wicked, when it comes, for the Lord will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being caught.

Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it.

Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come again, tomorrow I will give it”—when you have it with you.

Do not plan evil against your neighbor, who dwells trustingly beside you.

Do not contend with a man for no reason, when he has done you no harm.

Do not envy a man of violence and do not choose any of his ways, for the devious person is an abomination to the Lord, but the upright are in his confidence.

The Lord's curse is on the house of the wicked, but he blesses the dwelling of the righteous.
Toward the scorners he is scornful, but to the humble he gives favor.

The wise will inherit honor, but fools get disgrace.

Blessings!

:)

Victoria

© The Devoted Woman | Victoria Anderson

Monday, April 17, 2017

standing in agreement with my LifeGroup ladies

Lord Jesus...

We praise you.
We trust you.
We believe you are in control.
We lift up our lives and the lives of our households to you.
We give you all that we have because we know you are steadfast and worthy.
We cling to your good promises.
We long for your company.
We need you.
We love you.
In worship and praise, help us to keep our eyes focused on your Way, your Truth, your Life...
You are our today and our future. Blessed be the Name of the Lord.

Amen.

© The Devoted Woman | Victoria Anderson

Friday, April 14, 2017

He's Risen! He's Risen!

Majestic, Exalted, Supreme, and Divine;
My King, yes my King, all glory is Thine!
O Zion, arise! Make way for the One;
Our Savior is risen! Messiah has come!

The chains have been broken; oppression removed;
For Jesus, yes Jesus, His power is now proved!
At Calvary's Cross, came my greatest delight;
Forever, Eternal, my Day Spring, my Light!

The tomb has been emptied. The rock rolled aside;
The heaven's rejoice, cause in Him I abide!
So sound every trumpet, rejoice and give praise;
Both justice and mercy are found in His Ways!

See, death could not bind Him. Sin could not endure;
Believe Him, believe Him, and find yourself pure!
Forgiven as far as the East is to West;
Renewed as His bride and made whole as His blessed!

O Holy, yes Holy, for the Lamb that was slain;
O Glory, dear Glory, He's returned now to reign!
My words cannot showcase the depths of His care;
My heart stops astounded. My mind can't compare.

He lives! He fulfills! He frees! He restores!
Almighty is Jesus! All peace, love, and more!
The battle is over. The war has been won!
He's Risen! He's Risen! A New Life has come!

Happy Easter Weekend!

~Victoria

© The Devoted Woman | Victoria Anderson

Monday, April 10, 2017

i need you most

Heavenly Father, I have many things going on in my head this hour.
Many thoughts.
Many projects.
Many people, places, things, possibilities, and pursuits.
But Lord, I want you most.
I need you most.
Help me to intimately know you most.
Focus my lens to see only your Way... Your proven path. Your healing presence.
Keep my heart aligned in your Truth... Your wise commands.  Your instructed peace.
Give me the fullness of your Life... Your promised hope.  Your immediate and eternal holiness.
Continue to change my very flesh into a living representation of your grace.
Draw my soul near.
Keep my heart close.
Use me.
And as you cover my sinfulness in your loving kindness,
Help me to throw my selfishness on the fire of your altar.
Give me the strength to trust you in each moment.
For you alone are my glory.
You are my lifelong goal.
You are my all-in-all.
You are the answer to every distraction and dream.
Blessed is your Name, dearest Jesus, my Savior and Lord!
Blessed is your living council, Holy Holy Holy Spirit of the Most High!
Blessed is your Majesty and Kingdom, omnipotent and omniscient, my Abba Father GOD!

"Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom.” (Hebrews 1:8)

Amen.

© The Devoted Woman | Victoria Anderson



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